Nancy the Cavapoo gets a second chance
Last Updated: 21/03/2023
A tiny puppy has been given a second chance at life after undergoing heart surgery.
Scans confirmed Cavapoo Nancy, who weighed a mere 2.5kg or just a couple of bags of sugar, was born with a rare heart defect.
It can be a killer, with over three-quarters of pups affected developing signs of congenital heart disease in their first year.
But following surgery at Moorview Referrals in Cramlington, near Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Nancy is full of life and owner Lynne Robson is just thankful the potentially deadly condition was spotted early enough.
“A couple of weeks before her second vaccination I had to take Nancy to the emergency vets with bacterial cystitis and the vet said she could hear a heart murmur,” said Mrs Robson.
“She advised getting it checked at her vaccination. Nancy was a bundle of energy and I wondered how she could have been so full of life with this.”
“Nancy was completely asymptomatic and very playful when we first saw her at 16 weeks,” said vet Antonio Moneva-Jordan from the Moorview cardiology team.
“On examination, we found what is called continuous “machinery” murmur and reached a diagnosis of patent ductus arteriosus, or PDA.
“It is quite rare, and we only see a handful of cases a year. It is something you would hope to detect during an initial puppy examination, but with small wriggly pups it can be missed.”
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Early closure of a PDA is strongly recommended and, due to her small size, it was decided an operation was the best option.
Fortunately, the surgery team at Moorview Referrals was able to operate and the PDA was successfully repaired.
“Happily, Nancy’s recovery was uneventful, and we were able to discharge her the following day on pain relief,” said Dr Moneva-Jordan.
“When we did follow-up checks four weeks after the surgery, everything was clear, and her long-term prognosis is excellent.”
Mrs Robson is just delighted with the fortuitous detection of the potentially deadly problem and says Nancy hasn’t looked back.
“She’s still tiny, but she’s feisty and she keeps up with her brother Shaun who’s much bigger.
“We’re really impressed with how quickly everything happened and just happy she came through it all.”
Moorview is part of My Family Vets, a nationwide network of veterinary practices and referral hospitals.
Owners who join its Pet Health Club plan receive discounts on selected veterinary care and medications — and are also covered for regular, routine treatments such as vaccinations, health checks and flea, worm and parasite treatments.